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  CSPAN    Public Affairs    News  News/Business.  

    November 6, 2012
    5:00 - 8:00pm EST  

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followed the florida recount. his remarks are just over 12 minutes. [applause] thank you wahl.
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thank you very much. thank you. thank you very much. caving, my fellow americans. i appreciate some very much the opportunity to speak with you tonight. mr. speaker, lieutenant governor, friends, distinguished guests, our country has been through a long and trying period, with the outcome of the presidential election not finalized for longer than any of us can imagine. vice president gore and i put our hearts and hopes into this campaign. we shared similar emotions so i understand how difficult this moment must be for vice- president gore and his family. he has a distinguished record of service to our country as a congressman, a senator, and vice-president.
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i received a gracious call from the vice-president this evening. we agreed to meet early next week and agreed to do our best to heal our country after this hard fought contest. tonight i want to thank all the thousands of volunteers and campaign workers who worked so hard on me -- my behalf. i also salute the vice-president and his supporters for waging a spirited campaign. i thank him for a call i know was difficult to make. we wish the vice-president and senator lieberman and their families the very best. i have a lot to be the ankle for. i am thankful french american and finkel we were able to resolve our -- think we are able to resolve our differences in a peaceful way. and thank you to the american
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people for the privilege of serving as your next president. i want to thank my wife and our daughters for their love. her active involvement as first lady has made texas a better place and she will be a wonderful first lady of america. [applause] i am proud to have dick cheney by my side and america will be proud to have him as our next as president -- vice president. [applause] tonight, i chose to speak from
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the chamber of the texas house of representatives because it has been home to bipartisan cooperation. here where democrats have the majority, republicans and democrats have worked together to -- we have had spirited disagreements and in the end we found constructive consensus. it is an experience i will always carry with me and an example will follow. i want to thank my friend, pete laney, and thank the lettis leaders from both political parties with whom of worked. across the hall in our tax is the senate and i cannot tell but bigelow ritual front, the former governor. his love for taxes if -- texas and ability to work in a bipartisan way is a model for all bus.
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-- all of us. [applause] the spirit of cooperation i have seen is what is needed in washington, d.c.. it is the challenge for the moment. after a difficult election we must put politics behind us and work together to make the promise of america available for everyone of our citizens. i hope we will move to -- our nation must rise above a house divided. americans to share hopes and goals and values far more important than any political
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disagreements. republicans want the best for our nation and some democrats. our roads may differ but not our hopes. america wants reconciliation and unity. americans want progress and we must seize this moment and deliver. together guided by a spirit of common sense and courtesy and common goals, we can unite and inspire the american citizens. we can teach every student of every background and accent so that no child is left behind. together, we will save social security and renew its promise of a secure retirement for generations to come. together, we will strengthen medicare and offered prescription drug coverage to all of our seniors, together we
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will give americans abroad, fair, and fiscally responsible tax relief they deserve. together, we will have a bipartisan foreign policy true to our values. and if true to our friends. we will have a military equal to every challenge and superior to every adversary. together, we will address the most society's deepest problems one person at a time. by encouraging and empowering the hearts and good works of the american people. this is the essence of compassionate conservatism. it will be a foundation of might administration. these priorities are not really republican concerns are democratic concerns. their american responsibilities. during the fall campaigns, we differ about the details of these proposals. there was remarkable consensus about the import issues before us.
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excellent schools, a retirement, and security, tax relief, a strong military, and more civil society. if we have discussed our differences. we are building consensus to make america an opportunity. i am optimistic this can happen. our future demands it. and our history proves it. tutored years ago in the election of 1800, america faced another close presidential election. a tie in the ledger rote college. after six days of voting, and 36 ballots, the house of representatives elected thomas jefferson, the third president of the united states. that election brought the first transfer of power from one party to another in our new democracy. surely after the election,
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jefferson in a letter wrote this. "the steady character of our man is a rock to which we may moor. we should be able to hope to do a great deal of good to the cause of freedom and harmony. 200 years have strengthened the steady character of america. as we begin the work of killing our nation, tonight i call upon that character, -- of healing our nation, i call upon that character, generosity of spirit, and a willingness to work hard and work together to solve any problem, and something else to ask you, to ask every american, i ask for you to pray for this great nation. i ask for your prayers from both parties and thank you for your prayers for me and my family and i asked you to pray
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for vice-president gore and his family. i have faith that with god help we have a nation -- we as a nation will move forward together as one nation, indivisible, and together we will create an america that is open so every citizen has access to the american dream. an america that is educated so every child has the keys to realize that dream. an america that is united in our diversity and our shared american values that are larger than race or party. i was not elected to serve one party. but to serve one nation. the president of the nine states is the president of every single american, of every race and every background. whether you voted for mironov, i will do my best to serve your interests and i will work to earn your respect. i will be guided by the sense of purpose to stand for principle,
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to be reasonable in manner, and above all, to do great good for the cause of freedom and harmony. the presidency is more than an honor, it is more than an office, it is a charge to keep and i will give it my all. think you very much and god bless america. bless america. [applause]
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>> and now vice president concedes. it took more than a month and a decision by the supreme court for a winner to be declared. the remarks or about eight minutes. >> -- are about eight minutes. >> -- are about eight minutes. gues>> good evening. just moments ago, i spoke with george w. bush and congratulated him on becoming the 43rd
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president of the united states. i promise him that i would not call him back this time. i offered to me with him as soon as possible so that we can start to heal the divisions of the campaign and the contest for which we just passed. almost a century and a half ago, senator stephen douglass told abraham lincoln who had just defeated him for the presidency, partisan feelings must yield to patriotism. i am with you, mr. president, and god bless you. in that same spirit, i say to president-elect bush, or remains of partisan rancor must be put aside and may god bless historic ship of this country. neither he nor i anticipated this long and difficult road. certainly neither of us wanted it to happen. yet it came, and now it has ended. resolved as it must be resolved through the honored institutions of our democracy. over the library of one of our
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great law schools is inscribed the model, not under man but under god in law. that is the ruling principle of american freedom, the source of our democratic liberty. i try to make it my guide tour of this contest as it has guided america's deliberations of all the complex issues of the past five weeks. the u.s. supreme court has spoken. let there be no doubt. while i strongly disagree with the court's decision, i except at -- except it. i accept the finality of this outcome which will be ratified in the electoral college. for the sake of unity, i offer my concession. i also accept my responsibility which i will discharge unconditionally to honor the new president-elect and do everything possible to help him bring americans together in fulfillment of the great vision that our declaration of independence defiance and that
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our constitution affirms and fans. let me say how grateful i am to all those who supported me and supported the cause for which we have fought. we feel a deep gratitude to joe lieberman who brought passion and high purpose to our partnership and open new doors not just for our campaign but our country. this has been an extraordinary election. in one of god's unforeseen pals, this belated broken impasse can point asselta and new common ground for its closeness can serve to remind us that we're when people with a shared history and a shared destiny. that history gives us many examples of contests as hotly debated and fiercely fought with their own challenges to the popular will. other disputes have dragged on for weeks before reaching a resolution. each time, both the victor and the vanquished have accepted the
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results peacefully and in the spirit of reconciliation. let it be with us. i know that many of my supporters are disappointed. i am, too. our disappointment must be overcome by our love of country. and i show for our members, let no one see this contest as a sign of american weakness. the strength of american democracy has shown most clearly through the difficulty it can overcome. i am have -- some have expressed concern that the and night -- an unusual nature of this election might hamper the next president. i do not believe it may be so. president-elect bush inherits a nation where citizens will be able to assist him in the conduct of his large responsibility. i will be at his disposal and i call on all americans, i urge all who stood with us to unite
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behind our next president. this is america. just as we fight hard when the stakes are high, we close ranks and come together when the contest is done. while there will be time enough to debate are continuing differences, now is the time to recognize that which unites us is greater than that which divides us. while we yet hold and and i yield our opposing belief, there is a higher duty than the one we owed to political parties. this is america and we put country before party. we will stand together behind our new president. as for what i will do next, i do not know the answer to that one yet. like many of you, i am looking for to spending the holidays with family and old friends. i know i will spend time in tennessee and in some fences, literally and figuratively. some have asked whether i have any regrets. i do have one regret.
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that i did not get the chance to stay and fight for the american people over the next four years. especially for those who need burdens lifted and barriers removed. especially for those who feel their voices have not been heard. i heard you. and i will not forget. i have seen america that in this campaign and i like what i see. it is worth fighting for. that is a fight i will never stop. as for the battle that ends tonight, i do believe as my father once said that no matter how hard the loss, defeat may serve as well as victory to shake the sole and let the glory out. for me this campaign and says it began, with the love of tipper and our family, with faith in god and in the country have been so proud to serve from vietnam to the vice-president see. and with gratitude to are truly tireless campaign staff and volunteers including all those who worked so hard in florida
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for the last 36 days in. now the political struggle is over and we turn again to the unending struggle for the common good of all americans and for those multitudes around the world who look to us for leadership in the cause of freedom. in the words of our great him, -- hymn, let us crown our good with brother heard from sea to shining sea. it is time for me to go. goodbye and good night and god bless america. >> tonight, watch election coverage on c-span. and key senate and h ouse adn victory in concession speeches from throughout the country and your reaction by phone, e-mail, facebook, and twitter. live coverage starts at 8:00 p.m. eastern.
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you can access interactive maps. and track state ballot initiatives. >> election day is beginning to wind down. president obama has been in chicago thinking campaign workers playing his traditional collection day basketball game. mitt romney had stops in pittsburgh and cleveland before returning to boston to watch the returns in a speech to supporters. we have been speaking to reporters the last couple of days here at c-span, finding out what they think is going to happen on election night. >> we're going to see a pretty consistent pattern across the country. it will start in virginia where the polls closed at 7:00 p.m. burgeon as a contested battleground state. a relatively tight race. the bottom line, it will be a close race. they're good at counting votes
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and we have a pretty good senate race. if we know that virginia is leaning one way or another, or toward one of the senate candidate, we're going to have a pretty good idea of what the rest of the night is good to look for. keep an eye on virginia. that is an early bellwether, canary in the coal mine for what is coming the rest of the night. in a macro sense what i am looking at is -- what we will see on november 6 is the first normal data point we have seen in eight years. we have not seen what a normal life threat looks like since george of the bush was running for reelection. we will watch how many non-white voter turnout. is this a march going to be -- did president obama reached the peak of how many underwriters
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between 18 and 29 short on election night itself? 18% of the electorate was in that young demographic or are we going to see that backslide to 15% this time around? we're looking at the white voters and their relationship with the democratic party. we've seen white working-class voters backing away from the democratic party. those three things to watch. how many voters turn out and how many actually vote. there are a couple of strong races. in the arizona senate, richard carmona. and heidi highcamp.
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both states toward republicans said they may not make it over that 50% mark. the difference between winning and losing is the difference for a reasonable night for democrats and a really good night where they could end up picking up seats at the end of the night. >> there is one hour and 40 minutes left to vote in virginia. this is fire station no. 10 in arlington. polls close at 7:00 p.m. eastern.
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the line here at first station when an10. -- fire station 10. our live coverage and we will have more election results beginning tonight. you can castro on line on our yourook page -- castor
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vote. 52,557 people voted for barack obama. 30,419 for mitt romney. that is facebook.com/cspan. >> i watch the morning journal and i like the give-and-take there. i like the balanced approach. i also like the colors. -- callers. some are unusual. c-span is everywhere. a small hearing, public policy meeting downtown, c-span seems to be there. >> c-span, created by america's cable companies in 1979, brought to you as a public service by your television provider.
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a short while ago we showed you the victory and concession speech from the 2000 presidential race. next up, the florida supreme court chief justice who presided over that decision in the state of florida. >> to give you a sense of what was going on at the time, let me take you back to 2000. you will hear from don evans. updating supporters of election night on that night in 2000. you'll hear from him and hear from bill daley doing the same. >> the latest count in the state of florida shows gov. bush winning that state by more than 1200 votes. they're still counting and i am confident when it is said and then we will prevail.
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thank you again for your hard work and all your efforts and we look forward to a great celebration. god bless. >> vice president gore and sen. lieberman are ready to concede and support president bush -- gov. bush. this is too close to call. i am told the results of florida become official, our campaign continues. [cheers and applause] will remember what happened. the networks retracted. the margin of victory was 0.5 or
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less and that prompted a recount. it was a november 16 that vice- president al gore filed an emergency motion challenging the certification of results in florida. here to take up the story is our next guest, joining us from florida. he was the former chief justice of the florida supreme court, charles welles. just as well, according to the time line, what happened next? >> we -- first there would like to say to my greetings from florida where we're looking forward to another exciting election day. not as exciting at election aftermath as we had in 2000. in 2000, what happened next was that we had a case out of the circuit court to come to the florida supreme court and we
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then said in an oral argument for november 20. on november 17, which was the friday before that oral argument, we entered a stay in which we stayed the secretary of state from certifying the election. the winner of the election until we had an opportunity to review the case that was coming to us, and then we would enter a further order following that case. the decision in that case in which we made a decision on november 21. issuing an opinion at that time and we extended the vote count in palm beach, board, and dade county. for the reasons of trying to
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reconcile the election statutes. we extended it until the following sunday and that was the sunday after thanksgiving. >> when did the supreme court get involved? ? the supreme court came into the case on the friday after thanksgiving? we issued our decision on november 21. thanksgiving was the thursday following the that tuesday. on friday, afternoon, i received word that the u.s. supreme court had granted a review on a petition by gov. bush at the time to review the decision that we had made on the 21st. it is important to note and that we had also had a crucial decision in the matter that we had made on thursday, on thanksgiving day to not having
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to do with the miami-dade county recount. >> that decision was? >> that decision was that we denied the petition for the court to order the canvassing board to continue a recount. the board had made a decision to not continue their count because they determined -- there was not enough time within our extended deadline in which you continue and recount the boats in miami-dade county. -- votes in miami-dade county. i had 40,000 votes out they considered that had not been counted by the machines. the gore team try to get the
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court to come in. we decided that we could not overrule the discretion that the miami-dade canvassing board had decided to not continue the account so we could not petition. there was the next day. >> you want to ask questions, here is your chance to do so.
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how has recount law changed in florida since 2000? >> there has been a substantial change. what we were working with in 2000 were statutes in conflict in which the statute in one section said that boats that were not returned by the county's to the secretary of state's office by 5:00 p.m. following the election should be ignored. that has been totally revamped. now it is a 14-day. and there were no standards other than the intent of the voter for -- which there could be manual recounts. now it has been adopted by the secretary of state and extensive recount standards.
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there are provisions that it attempted to -- have attempted to take care of the problem we had in florida in 2000 should there be a very close election as there was in 2000. >> that means if the recount does happen as far as your confidence -- or confidence in the system. >> i have confidence there have been great strides made. it is unlike the banking system. until we have a full stress test, we're not going to know where the weaknesses really like. i believe that we have successfully for the florida legislature together with the secretary of state's office has now successfully revamped the structure -- i believe we have successfully revamped the whole structure. we will not run into the same type of problems. host: have other states learn from florida's example?
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and applied it to their states? guest: i am not an expert on what other states have done. i know from reading articles in the media and in scholarly journals that other states have attempted to study what we did in florida and what happened in florida and to revamp their election laws also. host: justice chief wells served from 2000 to 2002. arlen, good morning. caller: i would like to know what happened to the people that tried to vote in miami-dade in 2000. they went to their polling place and it was closed. they took their case to the supreme court and i watched it
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on tv. i never heard another word about it. these people never got a chance to vote. could you tell me what you know about that? guest: i don't know about a case that went to the supreme court on people not being allowed to vote in miami-dade. the case that came to us or people that attempted to vote and their votes were rejected by the machine counts. in the case we were dealing with and the cases we were dealing with were cases that had to do with the use of a punch card ballots. host: next up from savannah, georgia. caller: two places broke down with the ibm machines and there
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was a huge black place in florida it in dade county. they did not get a chance to vote, and none of them did. the same thing happened in jacksonville. the mix-up of 3500 jews that voted for buchanan because they were pointing the wrong hole. guest: that has to do with the use of the butterfly ballot. that came to the court late in the process. we have a federalized system in which the states are in control of the election laws and then the states decentralized that further and place the responsibility upon supervisors
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of elections in the various counties. that was a decision that was made in palm beach county as to the form of the ballot by the supervisor of elections. she says that she attempted to have a ballot that was easily readable. it was the first sign that came to my attention that we were going to have a problem in florida. the form of the ballot not in conflict with the florida statute at that time. host: how have voting systems change since 2000? guest: the voting systems are now set out -- the types of voting systems are set out in regulations. the form of the ballot, they've
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had a problem about which there have been some press reports in palm beach county in this voting cycle on the manner in which ballots, absentee ballots were printed. as far as setting up the voting system, there are four types of systems that are all gone away from using punch card ballots. there are methods in the regulations that govern recounts of each of those four systems so that we do have methods by which the recounts are to be done if there is a
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need to do that. you have an automatic manual recount in florida if there is an election in which is below .25%. you have the machine recount if there is a .5% recount. there is a requirement for there to be printed material that will -- can be subject to manual recounts. host: is a mix of electronic and paper? guest: they are electronic with a paper backup. host: here is theodore from florida.
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caller: justice wells, in relation to what happened back in the 2000 election, this election, there are court judges over the u.s. that are not following the constitution as far as eligibility requirements are concerned. how can this be a legal election? barack obama's father is not a u.s. citizen. that makes him ineligible to be president. guest: before courts can make decisions, those cases have to be brought into court.
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i am not aware of a case that has raised that issue. host: when your court heard you be hearing this case, was the reaction? guest: the manner in which it came was developing across florida. it was apparent that florida was going to play a decisive role in that election. all the members of the court recognized that within 24 hours that we were going to probably received cases that would come to was for decisions. we did not know something that was important for people to understand in present time, or
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least i did not know, the limited period of time that is available to states in which to work out any contest concerning the electors of states. that is a period of 36 days. that is sent out this year, the electoral college is to gather and in order for a states resolution, disputes having to do with electors, it will be necessary for those disputes to have been resolved within the states by december 11 if there are competing delegations to the electoral college, we will get into some uncharted waters as to what happens in congress after jan. 6.
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host: that is a concern for you. guest: it was a concern for me in 2000. there has been a lot written about whether in fact they're needed to be a decision in florida by december 12, 2000. it was my view at the time that it was necessary for florida to have resolved its differences. the first question i asked of the lawyers for gore and bush in the oral arguments -- we had oral arguments twice in 2000.
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the first oral arguments, i asked council for both of the parties, when it was the last day that we have to have a final resolution of the disputes concerning florida's electors without it prejudicing florida's voters. both sides said that date was december 12. that is the safe harbor provision in the united states code. that means states stay in control of their electors. host: this is joy on our democrats' line. caller: i read a great article on this issue by vincent bugliosi. he was a prosecutor out of los angeles.
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he prosecuted charles manson. out of 103 murder convictions, he won 101 of them. i suggest your viewers to google the article. host: do you have a question for our guest? caller: explains how this all went down. host: bernie from ohio. caller: good, beautiful morning to you! pedro, i love c-span. i have a quick question.
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the republicans always say states' rights, states' rights. when this happens, they ran to the district courts and the supreme court. i wonder if that struck you as strange. when all the bush goons one down and caused all kinds of problems during the recount, the have any idea why law enforcement was not called in to stop them from causing chaos on the scene and all that? all these people were flown in from the bush camp to raise
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problems. those are my two things. one is an opinion. host: anything to add? guest: i have no knowledge about what happened with law enforcement. the only thing that we had about what happened in dade county was a petition that was filed with us after the court of appeals in miami that the night getting involved in it. it reminded me of your first question. host: there is a story that talks about the new secretary of state. did this stand out of what happened of 2000? guest: there was a considerable
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amount of strong feelings about the secretary of state been and her performance during that. i did not believe the reorganization of the cabinet directly was aimed at that. i believe that the new secretary of state has made a good decision by not becoming involved in this presidential campaign. he has taken a low-profile and is not actively involved in one side or the other in this campaign. he was appointed by governor scott, who is a republican. it is not a good thing for the secretary of state to have been actively involved in one of the presidential campaigns or any campaigns or matters that the
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secretary of state will have to exercise discretion in any regard. i do think that was a factor in the 2000 election. host: we are looking at the florida 2000 election with our guest, charles wells, who was the chief justice of the florida supreme court. caller: hi. i watched all the trial proceedings that took place, on c-span, i might add.
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i'm nervous. the district judge ruled against gore. the case was sent up to you and you overruled the district judge. i felt that you had made a mistake on that decision. if you would not overlook him, this would not have been a big mess. the supreme court sent it back to you. i forget all the proceedings in between. you guys sent it back up. you had a strong dissent on that and i wonder if he could describe what went on. guest: it came out of the trial court, to us. that is a circuit court in
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florida. bush filed in miami and that judge dismissed that case. there was an action filed by the canvassing board to extend the time for the returns having to be with the state. that's the case that first came to us. we had two statutes that we believe were directly in conflict as to whether the secretary of state had the legal power to extend the time for manual recounts. one said that if it was passed the seven-day period. "may" in legal terms is a word begins discretion.
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the u.s. supreme court took the case from a petition by governor bush. we had extended the time on friday until sunday. bush did get the most votes, even after the recount. that case became moot. they went ahead and heard the oral argument. they sent it back to us asking for further explanation. in the meantime, gore had filed under another statute a contest.
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that was the second case. that case went all the way until we issued an opinion on december 8th and we had oral arguments in that case. that was broadcast on television. both of them were on television. when we issued that opinion on december the eighth, the majority of our court felt that there should just be a statewide recounts. my view is that this just had to end. the margin of error in this was always going to exceed the margin of victory as had been demonstrated through the months of litigation and various cases that had been brought to us. in addition, we had to observe the safe harbor on if we could under the act. the florida legislature was talking about selecting a competing electoral delegation.
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if the matter had reached a point in which a decision had to be made, i felt, a majority of our court on a four-three decision decided and that case then went to the supreme court. the u.s. supreme court then decided that the safe harbor provision should have been preserved. there were not equal standards of work to be applied in a statewide recount for manual recounts. that would reverse the majority of our court. in effect, that ended the case in their decision december 12th. as i believe, it was not a single decision along the way, but we were dealing with a process in which we were trying
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to review the various matters that had been brought to us. that's what courts do. courts are not commissioned. the issues have to be framed by the parties and then the court makes a decision on those issues. host: crystal river, florida, republican line. go ahead. caller: i was just on. host: apologies. virginia, independent line. go ahead. caller: how do you think the minor parties like the libertarian party and others will deal with this? host: oak park, ill. it had been my
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experience, i had been on the court for six years, by the time this case, along. i was surprised they came into what i believed was the middle. we had gotten through the protests face of our tax -- statutory scheme but the contest phase was going to begin after that and it did begin on monday and it was ongoing in the trial court when the u.s. supreme court issued its opinion on december 4. the answer to your question is yes. i was of the view that they came in prematurely. quex do think the justice would undertake a similar case >> i think that -- i thought they
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needed to come in at some point in the case. i've always thought that from the beginning. after all, this whole legal question had to do with the election of the president of the united states. i thought that the u.s. supreme court would be involved in what was maybe not technically but essentially a federal question at the end. i did think that -- i was very much of the view that they needed to come in when they came in on december 9. because they needed to evaluate whether florida could properly have a citywide recount. that is a two-part answer but i think they needed to come in by think they came in prematurely the first time. >> the next caller.
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independent line. >> i have to move on. caller: yes, my question is about the voter suppression that seems to be going on and what can be done about it and can people be held accountable for that suppression? that is my question. i will hang up and your answer. guest: those are matters which presently have to first be dealt with by local officials and then if there court cases that are brought out of that, we have to -- they have to be dealt with by the courts. we have to it here to the manner in which our court system
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is set up in the united states to the fact that in order for the courts to get involved, people have to bring cases to the courts. i really do not have a response to what can be done if any specific item of voter suppression. as a nickel on the republican line. >> i actually call on the republican line because the independent line is so busy. thank you for being on. it is educational because in this country, there are so many misconceptions about what goes on in the up electoral process. my question really was -- this
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is something i did not know you guys were going to talk about this earlier. i think you just said that when you talked about the types of ballots -- hanging chad's, that was a name in the news a lot. did that come up in front of you in any way? did you have any experience with that particular part of the recount? >> the cases that came to us were both times cases that resulted because of the use of a punch card ballot. this form of ballot proved to have a lot of problems because of the fact that people use a stylus and attempted to punch out and sometimes they did not get that piece of paper punched
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out and sometimes it would henning. sometimes it would hang by two corners or one quarter. there were all sorts of names that came along -- hanging chad's, pregnant chad's -- it became a game show. we have got away from the use of those kinds of ballots and i think we will be better served because we have got away from use of those. host: what lessons have we learned about this process since 2000? guest: we have learned we need to be set up an organized. we need to resolve disputes that
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arise out of the counting of votes and in it -- in an expeditious way because it is exceedingly important that that issue of the passing of power, what is truly the most powerful position in the world not be left in doubt. the court's role in doing that is what the ultimate role has to be of every court, to gather the facts and make a decision. that decision has to be made on a basis that will allow people to have competent and that it is timely. host: thank you for your time. >> it is just a couple of
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minutes after 6:00 eastern and polls are closing in kentucky and parts of indiana. this is arlington, va., live coverage at a polling station in arlington. for our weights are being reported in parts of virginia, including prince william county. but the register says that they are in line by seven, they can vote. the polls are open for at least another hour.
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>> still a steady line at fire station no. 10. polls are closing at 7:00 eastern. polls are closed in kentucky and parts of indiana. the weight at one polling station in aisle is that to be two hours. applause on the romney blame as
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we land in boston. the final flight of the 2012 campaign is over. this one from the "boston globe" -- traffic totally locked by the romney election night closures. he is talking about the associated press election polls -- the exit polls they have been doing. our election night coverage gets underway at 8:00 eastern. the senate, house and the governor's contest will have coverage of the president in chicago. that romney in boston with victory and concession speeches. we will have your reaction by phone, e-mail, facebook and twitter. that covered starts at 8:00 here
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on c-span. throughout the day, we have been bringing you some of the past presidential victory and concession speeches. next up, president george to the bush claims victory from the ronald reagan building in washington. he beat massachusetts senator john kerry to win a second term. [applause] president bush: thank you. >> four more years, four more years, four more years, four more years, four more years. >> thank you all. thk you all foroming. we had a long night and a heg]t nig e voters turned out in
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record numbers and delivered a historic victory. [cheering and applau] earlier today senator kerry lled with his congratulations. we had a really good phone call. he was very gracious. senator kerry waged a spedamign, and he and his supporters can be proud of their efforts. [appla laura and i wish senato kerry and teresa and their whole family all our best wishes. americs spoken,nd i'm humbled by the trust and the confidenf my flow citizens. with that trust comes ay to serve all americans, and
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iill do my best to fulfill atuty every day as your president. [cheering and applauding] there are many people to thank, and my family comes first. [cheering and applauding] laura is the love of my life. [cheering and applauding] i'm glad your too. [laughter] i want to thank our daughters who joined their dad for his lastpa [cheering and applauding] i appreciate the hard work of my sister and my
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brothers. i especiallwant to thank my parents for their loving support. [cheering and applauding] i'm grateful to the vice president and lynne and their daughters who have wo s hard and been such a vital part of ourm. [cheering and applauding] erica with wisdom and honor, and i'm proud to serve beside him. [applause] i want to thank my superb campaign team. i want to thank you all for your hard work. [applause]
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was imprezed every day by how hard and -- impressed every day by how hardow il o tast racit.ma [cheeranplauding] the campaign manager ken mellman. [cheering and applauding] mehlman. erg anappldi the architect karl rove. [cheering and applauding] i want to thank ed gillespie for leading our party so well. [cheering and applauding] i want to thank the thousa our supporters across our cry i want to thank you for your hugs on the rope lines. i want to thank you for your prayers on the rope lines. i want to thank you for your
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kind words on the rope lines. i want to thank you f c and p up t sign toal toou nehbs, tget e . dause you did edleorwe cebratgod. heerg apdi] there's an o sg not pray for tasks equal to your powers. pray for powers equal to yourks inouisricea amics beeenre rerafedmh r people have restoredhe vigor of this economy.
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and shown res our military has brought justice to the enemy and honor to america. [applause] our nation has defended itself and served the freedom of all mankind. i am proud to lead such an amazing country and i am proud to leave it forward. [applause] because we have done the hard work -- we are entering a season of hope. we will continue our economic progress. we will reform our outdated tax code, strengthen social security for the next generation, make
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public schools all they can beat that and hold our deepest all use of family and faith. watching emerging democracies in iraq and afghanistan. [applause] so they can grow in strength and defend their freedom. and their servicemen and women will come home with the honor they have burned. [applause] -- the honor they have earned. with good allies that our side, we will fight this war on terror with every resource of our national power so our children can live in freedom and in
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peace. [applause] reaching these goals will require the brunt of americans. today, want to speak to every person who voted for my opponent. to make this nation stronger and better, i will need your support. i will work to earn it. i will do all i can do to deserve your trust. a new turn -- a new term is a new opportunity to reach out to the whole nation. we have one country, one constitution, and one future that binds us. when we come together, and work together, there is no limit to
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the greatness of america. [applause] let me close with a word to the people of the state of texas. [applause] we have known each other the longest and he started me on this journey. on the open plains of texas, i first learned the character of our country, sturdy and honest and helpful as the break of day. i will always be grateful to the good people of my stay and whenever the road that lies ahead, that road will take me home. the campaign has ended and the united states of america goes
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forward with confidence and faith. i see a great day coming for our country and i am eager for the work ahead. i've lachute, and may god bless america. ♪
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♪ ♪ >> and george w. bush won the 2004 race with 51% of the popular vote. john carey won 48% of the popular vote. he spoke to supporters and
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family in boston for about 20 minutes. [applause] [cheering and applauding] pch thank you. >> thank you. [cheering and applauding] thank you so much. thank you. [applause]. >> thank you. [applause]
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thank you, thank you so much. thank you, thank you so much. you just have no idea how warming and how generous that welcome is, your love is, your affection and i'm gratified by it. i'm sorry that we got here a little bit late and a little bit short. earlier today i spoke to president bush and i offered him and laura our congratulations on their victory. we had a good conversation and we talked about the danger of division in our country and the need, the desperate need for unity, for finding the common ground coming together. today i hope that we can begin the healing. [applause].
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in america, it is vital that every vote count and that every vote be counted, but the outcome should be decided by voters not a protracted legal process. i would not give up this fight if there was a chance that we would prevail, but it is now clear that even when all the provisional ballots are countsed, which they will be, there won't be enough outstanding votes for us to be able to win ohio. and therefore, we cannot win this election. my friends, it was here that we began our campaign for the presidency. and all we had was hope and a vision for a better america. it was a privilege and a gift to spend two years traveling this country,
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coming to know so many of you. i wish that i could just wrap you up in my arms and embrace each and every one of you individually all across this nation. i thank you from the bottom of my heart. [cheering and applauding]. thank you, thank you, thank you. [applause] >> thank you. thank you. we still got your back! >> thank you, man. [applause]
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>> and i assure you you watch, i'll still have yours. so hang in there. [applause]. i will always be particularly grateful to the colleague that you just heard from who became my partner. my very close friend, an extraordinary leader john edwards and i thank him for everything he did. [applause] john and i would be the first to tell you that we owe so much to our families. they're here with us today. they were with us every single step of the way they sustained us. they went out on their own
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and they multimultiplied our campaign all across this country. no one did this with more grace and with courage and candor that i love than my wife teresa. and i thank her. [cheering and applauding] thank you. and our children were there every single step of the way. it was unbelievable. vanessa, alec, chris, andre and john from my family and elizabeth edwards who is so remarkable and so strong and so smart. [cheering and applauding]
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and johnny and kate who went out there on her own just like my daughters did and also emma, claire and jack who were up beyond their bedtime last night like a lot of us. [applause]. >> awant to thank my -- i want to thank my crew mates and my friends from 35 years ago that great bands -- band of brothers who crisscrossed this country on my behalf through 2004. [applause]. thank you. they had the courage to speak the truth back then and they spoke it again this
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year and for that i will forever be grateful. and thank also as i look around here to friends and family of a lifetime. some from college, friends made all across the years. and then all across the miles of this campaign. you are so special. you brought the gift of your passion for our country and the possibilities of change and that will stay with us and with this country forever. thanks to democrats and republicans and independents who stood with us and everyone who voted no matter who their candidate was. and thanks to my absolutely unbelievable dedicated staff led by a wonderful campaign manager mary beth cahill. who did an extraordinary job. [cheering and applauding].
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there's so much written about campaigns and there's so much that americans never get to see. i wish they could all spend a day on a campaign and see how hard these folks work to make america better. it is its own unbelievable contribution to our democracy and it's a gift to everybody, but especially to me and i'm grateful to each and every one of you and i thank your families and i thank you for the sacrifices you've made. and to all the volunteers all across this country who gave so much of themselves. you know, thanks to william field a 6-year-old who collected $680 a quarter and a dollar at a time selling bracelets during the summer
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to help change america. [applause] thanks to michael benson from florida who i spied in a rope line holding a container of money. turned out he'd raided his piggy bank and wanted to contribute and thanks to an 11-year-old who started kids for kerry all across our country [applause] >> i think of the brigades of the students and people young and old who took time to travel, time off from work, their own vacation time to work in states far and wide. they braved the hot days of summer and the cold days of the fall and the winter to knock on doors because they were determined to open the doors of opportunity to all americans. they worked their hearts out and i wish you don't know how much that i could have
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brought this race home for you, for them. and i say to them now, don't lose faith. what you did made a difference and building on itself -- [applause] >> building on itself we go on to make a difference another day. i promise you that time will come. the time will come. the election will come when your work and your ballots will change the world and it's worth fighting for. [applause] >> i want to especially say to the american people in this journey you have given me the honor and the gift of listening and learning from you. i have visited your homes, i
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visited your churches, i visited your community halls, i've heard your stories i know your struggles, i know your hopes. they are part of me now. and i will never forget you and i'll never stop fighting for you. [applause] thank you. you may not understand completely in what ways, but it is true when i say to you that you have taught me and you've tested me and you've lifted me up and you made me stronger. i did my best to express my
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vision and my hopes for america. we worked hard and we fought hard and i wish that things had turned out a little differently. but in an american election, there are no losers because whether or not our candidates are successful the next morning we all wake up as americans. [applause] >> and that is the greatest privilege and the most remarkable good fortune that can come to us on earth. with that gift also comes obligation. we are required now to work together for the good of our country. in the days ahead we must find common cause. we must join in common effort without remorse or recrimination without anger
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or ran core. america is in need of unity and longing for a longer measure of compassion. i hope president bush will advance those values in the coming years. i pledge to do my part, to try to bridge the partisan divide. i know this is a difficult time for my supporters, but i ask them, all of you, to join me in doing that. now more than ever with our soldiers in harm's way, we must stand together and succeed in iraq and win the war on terror. i will also do everything in my power to ensure that my party a proud democratic party stands true to our best hopes and ideals. i believe that what we started in this campaign will not end here. [applause]
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our fight goes on to put america back to work and to make our economy a great engine of job growth. our fight goes on to make affordable healthcare an accessible right for all americans, not a privilege. our fight goes on to protect the environment to achieve equality, to push the frontiers of science and discovery and to restore america's reputation in the world. i believe that all of this will happen and sooner than we may think. because we're america and america always moves forward. [applause] i've been honored to represent the citizens of this commonwealth for -- in the united states senate now for 20 years.
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and i pledged to them that in the years ahead i'm going to fight on for the people and for the principles that i've learned and lived with here in massachusetts. i'm proud of what we stood for in this campaign and of what we accomplished. when we began, no one thought it was possible to even make this a close race. but we stood for real change, change that would make a real difference in the life of our nation and in the lives of our families and we defineed that choice to america. i'll never forget the wonderful people who came to our rallies who stood in our rope lines, who put their hopes in our hands, who invested in each and every one of us. i saw in them the truth that america is not only great but it is good. [applause] so with a grateful heart i
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leave this campaign with a prayer that has even greater meaning to me now that i've come to know our vast country so much better. thanks to all of you and what a privilege it has been to do so and that prayer is very simple, god bless america. thank you. [cheering and applauding] thank you
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[cheering and applauding] [applause] >> election day 20 call on c- span. we have been alive at polling pace -- polling places all day. polls are open in virginia for another 25 minutes. also closing, vt., florida and
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south carolina. still a long line to go as you can see here.
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>> a lot mine here in arlington, virginia. a live look at fire station no. 10. long lines in miami dade -- other reports from the camp paid -- from the campaign -- a reporter from the "boston globe" -- the obama girls are flying to chicago with their grandmother. a reporter from cbs saying president obama is doing swing state interviews and will have dinner at home with his daughter -- with his family and daughters. the romney campaign is
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motorcading to the convention center. we have been speaking to a campaign of political reporters ahead of the election today to find out how they think results will go tonight. >> the big picture when you are watching the house races is that republicans are going to hold the house. no one except the most optimistic person and the democratic party thinks they have a shot to win the house. what the watch for? a few key states where democrats can pick up a few seats -- the state of new york, a few races are in play. a moderate freshman republican in a pretty democratic area. to watch that race closely. upstate, a close race, we will also watch illinois seats. wave redistricting worked in illinois, they gave democrats a
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chance to eat away at some of those seats. joe walsh is honorable. he has a lot of controversy and he's known for having a temper and has been caught on youtube and has a child support issue and he is running against a democratic hero, tammy duckworth. there is a tight race and the suburbs chicago. any suburban republicans you will want to watch. same thing in colorado. if you are staying up late, you have to watch the two democrats going against each other -- the race got really nasty when brad sherman seem to almost threatened to throttle howard berman during a debate. it has made that runs on youtube -- that is definitely one to watch. >> is there anything that will surprise you coming out of the election night? >> it would surprise me it
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democrats picked up more than 10 seats. they started with what they called their drive for 25. they need to pick up even more than 25 to be in that maturity due to attrition and redistricting and open seats. all right now, the internal projections are somewhere around 10. if it -- if the democrats get more than 10 seats, it's a big night for democrats. if they only get single digits, it's a bad night for democrats. john boehner should not worry but losing the speaker's gavel. he should just be worried about the freshman, especially those in the suburbs. if you want to watch for other high-profile people caught watch that alan west race in florida. he's a firebrand and is controversial. he gives a lot of good controversial "spirited is a tough district, a swing district and he is favored to win. also watched michele bachmann's
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race. she got a tougher district in the redistricting there and she always manages to survive. the democrats' hate her and raise a ton of money against her and spend millions thinking they can knock her out but she always seems to survive. she is favored to win but it is always tight. the democrats would love to take her out that she is still favored to win. she could still pull millions of dollars from across the country but that the great race to watch. she is a headliner, so it's good to watch these people. >> tonight, watch election coverage on c-span at -- with coverage from chicago and boston, a key house and senate and concession and victory speeches. plus, your calls, e-mail, and feedback from facebook and twitter. you can access interactive maps
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and election results, update on the balance of power in congress and track state ballot initiatives. >> barack obama won the 2008 presidential election with 53% of the popular vote, 365 electoral votes. john mccain led a 46% of the popular vote and 173 electoral votes. he spoke to his supporters in phoenix after phoning president obama and conceding the race.
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>> thank you for coming here on this beautiful arizona evening. my friends, we have come to the end of a long journey. the american people have spoken and they have spoken clearly. a little while ago, i had the honor of calling senator barack obama to congratulate him -- [booing] congratulate him on being elected president of this country we both love. in a contest this long and difficult as this campaign has been, his success commence my respect for his ability and perseverance. but that he managed to do so by inspiring the hopes of so many millions of americans who was wrongly believed they have little at stake or little influence in the election of an american president is something
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i deeply admire and commend him for achieving. but this is an historic election and i recognize the special significance it has four african-americans. and for the special pride that must be there tonight. i have always believed america offers opportunities to all have the industry and will to seize it. senator obama believes that also. but we both recognize that the we have come a long way from the old injustices that once sustained our nation's reputations and denied some americans the full blessings of american citizenship, the memory of them still has the power to wound. a century ago, president theodore roosevelt's invitation of booker t. washington to dine at the white house was taken as an outrage in many quarters.
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america today is a world away from the cruel and prideful bigotry of that time. there is no better evidence of this than the election of an african-american to the presidency of the united states. let there be no reason now -- [applause] let there be no reason now for any american to fail to cherish their citizenship in this, the greatest nation on earth. [applause] senator obama has achieved a great thing for himself and for his country. i applaud him for it and offer him my sincere sympathy that his beloved grandmother did not live to see this day. though our faith escher's us she is at rest and the presence of her creator and so very proud of the good and she helped raise.
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senator obama and i have had an argued are differences and he has prevailed. no doubt, many of those differences remain. these are difficult times for our country. i pledged to him tonight to do all in my power to help him lead us through the many challenges we face. i urge all americans -- i urge all americans who supported me to join me in not just congratulating him, but offering our next president our goodwill and earnest effort to find ways to come together, to find the necessary compromises, to bridge our differences, and help restore our prosperity, defend our security in a dangerous world, and leave our children and grandchildren a stronger, better country than we inherited.
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whatever our differences, we are fellow americans, and please believe me when i say no association has ever meant more to me than that. [applause] it is natural to night to feel some disappointment. but tomorrow, we must move beyond it and work together to get our country moving again. we fought as hard as we could and though we fell short, the failure is mine, not yours.
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i am so deeply grateful to all of you for the great honor of your support and all you have done for me, i wish the outcome had been different, my friends. the road was a difficult one from the outset, but your support and friendship never wavered. i cannot adequately express how deeply indebted i am to you. i expect -- i am especially grateful to my wife cindy, my dear mother, -- my dear mother, all my family and all the old and dear friends who stood by my side through the many ups and downs of this long campaign. i have always been a fortune of man and never more so for the love and encouragement you have given me. campaigns are often harder on a candidate's family that they can't it. that has been true in this campaign.
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all i can't offer of my compensation is my love and gratitude of the promise of more peaceful years ahead. i am also of course very faithful to governor sarah palin [applause] one of the best campaigners i've ever seen and an impressive new voice in our party for reform and the principles i have always been our greatest strength. her husband todd and their five beautiful children, for their tireless dedication to our cause and the courage and grace they showed in the rough-and-tumble of a presidential campaign.
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we can all look forward to her future service to alaska, the republican party, and our country. [applause] to all my campaign comrades from rick davis comity -- to steve schmidt, to every last volunteer that fought so hard and valiantly month after month in what at times seemed to be the most challenging campaign in modern times, thank you very much. a lost election will never be more to me that the privilege of your faith and friendship. i don't know what more we could have done to try to win this election. i will leave that to others to determine. every can't it makes mistakes, and i'm sure i made my share of them. but i won't spend a moment of the future regretting what might
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have been. this campaign was and will remain the great honor of my life. my heart is filled with nothing but gratitude for the experience and to the american people for giving me a fair hearing before deciding that senator obama and my old friend, senator joe biden should have the honor of leading us for the next four years. please. i would not be an american worthy of the name should i regret a fate that has allowed me the extraordinary privilege of serving this country for half a century. today, i was a candidate for the highest office of the country i love so much. and tonight, i remain her servant. that is blessed day -- that is blessed enough for everyone and i think that people of arizona
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for it. [applause] bill tonight, more than any night, i hold my heart nothing but love for this country and for all its citizens. whether they supported me or senator obama, i wish godspeed to the man who was my former opponent and will be my president. i call on all americans as i have often in this campaign to not despair of our present difficulties, but to believe always in the problems and greatness of america because nothing is inevitable here. americans never quit. we never surrender. we never hide from history. we make history. thank you, god bless you have got bless america.
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[applause] >> also that night, november 4, 2008, barack obama addressed a crowd of about 240,000 supporters in chicago's grant park after he won the election, becoming the first african- american to win the presidency. his remarks are about 20 minutes. [applause]
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>> hello, chicago. [applause] if there is anyone out there who still doubts that america is a place where all things are possible, who still wonders if
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the dream of our founders is alive in our time, who still questions the power of our democracy, tonight is your answer. [applause] is the answer told by lines that stretch from schools and churches in numbers this nation has ever seen. by people who waited three hours and four hours, many for the first time in their lives because they believed this time must be different. that their voices could be that different. it is the answer spoken by young and old, rich and poor, a democrat and republican, black, white, hispanic, asian, native american, gay, straight, disabled, and not disabled. americans who sent a message to
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the world that we have never been just a collection of individuals or a collection of red states and blue states. we are and always will be the united states of america. [applause] it is the answer that has led those who have been told for so long by so many to be cynical and fearful and doubtful about what we can achieve to put their hands on the ark of history and then that once more toward the hope of a better day. it has been a long time coming, but tonight cut because of what we did on this day in this election at this defining moment, a change has come to america. [applause]
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a little earlier this evening, i received an extraordinarily gracious call from senator mccain. senator mccain fought long and hard in this campaign and he has fought even longer and harder for the country that he loves. he has endured sacrifices for america that most of us cannot begin to imagine. we are better off for the service rendered by this brave and selfless leader. i congratulate him, i congratulate sarah palin for all they have achieved, and i look forward to working with them to renew this nation paused promise in the months ahead. [applause]
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i want to thank my partner on this earth, a man who campaigns from his heart and fights for the men and women he grew up with on the streets of scranton and rode with on a train home to delaware, a vice president elect of the united states, joe biden. [applause] i would not be standing here tonight without the unyielding support of my best friend for the last 16 years, the rock of our family, the love of my life, the nation's next first lady, michelle obama. [applause]
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sasha and amalia, i love you both more than you can't imagine it. and you have earned a new puppy that is coming with us to the white house. [applause] while she is no longer with us, i know my grandmother is watching. along with the family that made me who i am, i miss them tonight. i know my debt to them is beyond measure. to my campaign manager, david plouffe, my chief strategist, david axelrod, and the best campaign team ever assembled in the history of politics -- you made this happen, and i am forever grateful for what you've sacrificed to get it
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done. but above all, i will never forget who this victory truly belongs to -- it belongs to you. i was never the likeliest candidate for this office. we didn't start with much money or many endorsements.
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our campaign was not hatched in the halls of washington -- it began in the backyards of des moines and the living rooms of concord and the front porches of charleston. it was built by working men and women who dug into what little savings they had to give $5 and $10 and $20 to this cause. it grew strength from the young people who rejected the myth of their generation's apathy, who left their homes and their families for jobs that offered little pay and less sleep, from the not-so-young people who braved the bitter cold and
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scorching heat to knock on the doors of perfect strangers, from the millions of americans who volunteered and organized, and proved that more than two centuries later, a government of the people, by the people and for the people has not perished from this earth. this is your victory. i know you didn't do this just to win an election, and i know you didn't do it for me. you did it because you understand the enormity of the task that lies ahead. for even as we celebrate tonight, we know the challenges that tomorrow will bring are the greatest of our lifetime -- two wars, a planet in peril, the worst financial crisis in a century. even as we stand here tonight, we know there are brave americans waking up in the deserts of iraq and the mountains of afghanistan to risk their lives for us. there are mothers and fathers who will lie awake after their children fall asleep and wonder how they'll make the mortgage, or pay their doctor's bills, or save enough for college. there is new energy to harness and new jobs to be created, new schools to build and threats to
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meet and alliances to repair. the road ahead will be long. our climb will be steep. we may not get there in one year, or even one term, but america -- i have never been more hopeful than i am tonight that we will get there. i promise you: we as a people will get there. there will be setbacks and false starts. there are many who won't agree with every decision or policy i make as president, and we know that government can't solve every problem.
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but i will always be honest with you about the challenges we face. i will listen to you, especially when we disagree. and, above all, i will ask you join in the work of remaking this nation the only way it's been done in america for 221 years -- block by block, brick by brick, callused hand by callused hand. what began 21 months ago in the depths of winter must not end on this autumn night. this victory alone is not the change we seek -- it is only the chance for us to make that
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change. and that cannot happen if we go back to the way things were. it cannot happen without you. so let us summon a new spirit of patriotism, of service and responsibility where each of us resolves to pitch in and work harder and look after not only ourselves, but each other. let us remember that if this financial crisis taught us anything, it's that we cannot have a thriving wall street while main street suffers. in this country, we rise or fall as one nation -- as one people. let us resist the temptation to fall back on the same partisanship and pettiness and immaturity that has poisoned our politics for so long. let us remember that it was a man from this state who first carried the banner of the republican party to the white house -- a party founded on the values of self-reliance, individual liberty and national unity. those are values we all share, and while the democratic party has won a great victory tonight, we do so with a measure of humility and determination to
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heal the divides that have held back our progress. as lincoln said to a nation far more divided than ours, "we are not enemies, but friends... though passion may have strained, it must not break our bonds of affection." and, to those americans whose support i have yet to earn, i may not have won your vote, but i hear your voices, i need your help, and i will be your president, too. and to all those watching tonight from beyond our shores, from parliaments and palaces to those who are huddled around radios in the forgotten corners of our world -- our stories are singular, but our destiny is shared, and a new dawn of american leadership is at hand. to those who would tear this world down: we will defeat you. to those who seek peace and security: we support you. and to all those who have
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wondered if america's beacon still burns as bright: tonight, we proved once more that the true strength of our nation comes not from the might of our arms or the scale of our wealth, but from the enduring power of our ideals: democracy, liberty, opportunity and unyielding hope. for that is the true genius of america -- that america can change. our union can be perfected. and what we have already achieved gives us hope for what we can and must achieve tomorrow. this election had many firsts and many stories that will be told for generations. but one that's on my mind tonight is about a woman who
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cast her ballot in atlanta. she's a lot like the millions of others who stood in line to make their voice heard in this election, except for one thing: ann nixon cooper is 106 years old. she was born just a generation past slavery, a time when there were no cars on the road or planes in the sky, when someone like her couldn't vote for two reasons -- because she was a woman and because of the color of her skin. and tonight, i think about all that she's seen throughout her century in america -- the heartache and the hope, the struggle and the progress, the times we were told that we can't and the people who pressed on with that american creed: yes, we can. voicesme when women's were silenced and their hopes dismissed, she lived to see them stand up and speak out and reach for the ballot. yes, we can. when there was despair in the
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dust bowl and depression across the land, she saw a nation conquer fear itself with a new deal, new jobs and a new sense of common purpose. yes, we can. when the bombs fell on our harbor and tyranny threatened the world, she was there to witness a generation rise to greatness and a democracy was saved. yes, we can. she was there for the buses in montgomery, the hoses in birmingham, a bridge in selma and a preacher from atlanta who told a people that "we shall overcome." yes, we can. a man touched down on the moon, a wall came down in berlin, a world was connected by our own science and imagination. and this year, in this election, she touched her finger to a screen and cast her vote, because after 106 years in america, through the best of
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times and the darkest of hours, she knows how america can change. yes, we can. america, we have come so far. we have seen so much. but there is so much more to do. so tonight, let us ask ourselves: if our children should live to see the next century, if my daughters should be so lucky to live as long as ann nixon cooper, what change will they see? what progress will we have made? this is our chance to answer that call. this is our moment. this is our time -- to put our people back to work and open doors of opportunity for our kids, to restore prosperity and promote the cause of peace, to reclaim the american dream and reaffirm that fundamental truth that out of many, we are one, that while we breathe, we hope, and where we are met with
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cynicism, and doubt, and those who tell us that we can't, we will respond with that timeless creed that sums up the spirit of a people: yes, we can. thank you, god bless you, and may god bless the united states of america. [applause]
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♪ >> polls closed in a number of states just a few minutes ago. it is projected president obama wins vermont and its electoral votes. both are closing in north carolina and ohio at 7:30. our election results is getting underway at 8:00 eastern. victory concession speeches and much more, including your reaction by phone, e-mail, facebook, and clutter, all happening on c-span. a last chance for you to participate on-line on the
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facebook poll. the vote so far, 800,000 people voted for barack obama. for mitt romney, 45,752. that is facebook.com/c-span. next up, we are joined for a history of close elections. host: richard norton smith from george mason university. he is an author and a presidential historian. we are talking about election day, particularly when it comes to close elections. is there a history? guest: there is a history of just about everything and it is a particularly colorful one. going back to the beginning, there is arguably a flaw in the constitution. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2012] they did not foresee the rise of organized political parties. indeed, they dreaded the process.
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and so, in 1800, of every state in the electoral college had two votes. one was to be cast for president in the other four vice president. by 1800, the federal lists around the john adams had to come here and organized to the point that there were recognizable as political parties. what that meant was that the candidate for president and vice president tied. jefferson, who was supposed to be candidates for the president had 73 and aaron burr of new york, supposed to be vice- president also was 73. that allowed the federalists to fish in troubled waters and it
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took the house of representatives 36 ballots to do the right thing. and to confirm jefferson. among other things, it strayed any relationship between jefferson and burr. and it kept the constitution from being amended to have the constitution that we have senate. host: you have a presidential history question, here is a chance to talk to our guest. the numbers are on your screen. you can send us a tweet @cspan2012.
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how were the people reacting to the process back then in 1800? guest: it was much more elite, frankly. some cases, the legislature's only voted. there was no doubt that people recognize that this exposed hidden flaws in the system. it was rectified. host: 1876. guest: that is a bizarre collection, not least of all because in so many ways, it foreshadows what we all lived through in 2000. the same state in some cases all in the balance of power. this was after the civil war. reconstruction had played out. there are a whole number of factors come into play here. the democrats elected a governor in new york. republicans compromised on the governor ohio, rutherford b. hayes, mildly reformist, but
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there were also carrying the baggage of the administration and a new perception that reconstruction had failed in the south. on election night, there was no doubt having won the popular vote by 250,000, but there were three states, louisiana, south carolina, and florida, but were up for grabs the next morning. to this date, historians are still angry. there is no doubt that newly freed slaves were intimidated by southern democrats to stay away from the polls. it's also clear that thousands of boat basically thrown out or were stolen by republicans. this went on. finally, it got more complicated
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because you have the house, which with democratic and the senate was republican and they came up with this interesting solution to create a commission, 15 members, five from the house, five from the senate and five members of the supreme court. the had actually found one independent justice, a man named david davis from illinois. guess what? illinois elected davis to the senate and he resigned from the commission, replaced by republican.
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in a series of 8-7 party boats, they were awarded all three states. by one of electoral votes, he became president. host: there was a phone call or some kind of communication back? guest: he went to bed thinking he had won. on the surface, there are some parallels. he had been elected in 1912 and the american party basically split, the conservative wing nominating the past and the progressives favoring teddy roosevelt who formed his own third party given that situation, wilson became the first democratic president in 20 years. his position was always going to be tenuous if those two wings of the party but could not reevaluate. on purpose, they did so and they've nominated a very distinguished candidate, former governor of new york, member of the united states supreme court, but the problem was this split existed out in the country and nowhere more in california. when he was left to california,
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he was shown around by the conservative components of the party, the governor, who voted for roosevelt and he never saw johnson. he took that very personally on election day. he lost california by 3773 votes. it took two days. he was president for 10 minutes. he calls the his apartment in new york, the butler answer is, and he says, "the president- elect has gone to bed." "welcome and will you tell him when he wakes up that he's no longer president?" literally that is what happened. in those days it took a few
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days to get all of the returns from the west which turned out to be to his volley. been the greatest issue became preparedness. host: this history show a good track record of when these problems arise to finding ways to counteract them or at least fix them before the next elections take place? guest: policy issues? host: or procedures, what ever. guest: survival has a remarkable effect on political parties. it was unified and vehemently anti-wilson. it came up that year to be warren g. harding of ohio. the rest, as they say, is history. host: talking about the history of close presidential elections
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with richard norton smith from george mason university. guest: we do presidential tour is, if you every year. we're doing is civil war tour in june coinciding with the 150th anniversary of gettysburg. and we're doing 11 presidents in nine days in new york, new england, and the hudson valley. c-span viewers have seen clips of these in the past. if anyone wants more information, presidentsandpatriots. com host: our first call on the democratic line. go ahead. caller: eye of a question on the electoral college. back when it was founded all those years ago, but was the electoral college formed because a lot of people were not able to walk distances, or they had kids so they all could not vote as far as the popular vote?
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i do not understand the electoral college. now, zero we have many ways to vote, transportation come out all sorts of access. guest: electoral college was part of the same impulse. they did not set out to create a direct democracy. they wanted a mixed government, in effect, with elements of democracy and aristocracy. the classic example is the senate.
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the house is a portion of the popular vote but the senate is not. it is a compromise with the larger states and smaller states. the electoral college's very much the same way. the founders did not envision the people directly electing the president of working through, in effect, a representative democracy filtering their judgment through this artificial body of the best and brightest selected from each state individually. host: good morning from ohio, independent line. caller: i just wanted to know of mr. smith believes if george bush jr. could have been reelected if ross perot did not run. guest: it's a great "what if" and is speculation on my part. i'm inclined to say probably not.
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i think it would have been closer, but i think ross perot, in the end, it took as many votes from clinton. remember clinton was the outsider, the protest candidate. he but the candidate of change. if anything, perot muddied the waters. it was a less clear-cut alternative between the incumbent and challenger. what ross perot did, he had a profound effect. he may not have won the white house, but he won the argument. because of his 19% of the votes, the agenda, the national clinton agenda reflected perot's emphasis on addressing the deficit. i have often thought in some ways, but perot was ahead of his time. maybe he came along when he was necessary and now we need another kind of a perot.
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host: what about third parties in presidential elections? guest: they can play a vital role, but usually they do not. it they can play a role in anticipating and forcing the agenda. if you look at the populace, the agrarian protest party is they frankly anticipated and protested. host: south carolina for our guest, richard norton smith. go ahead. caller: place to hear you today and thank you for taking my call. i have been trying to get in for a long time. i was overseas for 12 years in the two elections for george bush i was in japan. then i went to germany for the second election and i was there
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but i did not get to vote and did not get my ballot until january. i heard that it was so tight and i have asked other people all over germany because i knew people on other bases. they had nod gotten them into the military had gotten it. here we are knowing that probably he won but he did not get all of the votes in how many other places overseas. i'm wondering when obama was elected the first time, two weeks before his side, democrats said it was too bad but a lot of people overseas were not going to be able to get their votes in on time. have the corrected this? what i'm suggesting our government do is make sure that when a person joins the military or is a civilian
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overseas on the basis that they actually have it on the four-man tell where they will be voting from. every single base needs to have a temporary unit before elections were every single person is able to vote and get it in well in time. host: a question of the larger election system. guest: on a bipartisan basis, we are all in agreement there are improvements that could be made in terms of electoral access. my sense is that, for a lot of reasons, including public relations, both parties are eager and eager to be seen to be eager to encourage voting by
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the military. host: 1960, john kennedy, richard nixon. guest: there are people in our audience who will remember sitting up all night waiting. kennedy had won in the polls and nixon had clearly it closed the gap in the last 10 days. the first significant votes, computers were new in 1960. it had spun out at 7:00 a prediction that kennedy would win over 400 electoral votes. it was pretty primitive in those days and it turned out to be loudly premature. as we now know, it went back and forth all night, famously in illinois, where mayor daley in chicago came through with just enough votes, and likewise in texas. the electoral college, i think it was 303-219. the popular vote was 118,000 out of 60 million. you do the math.
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it does not get much closer than that. host: next caller. caller: are there any particular elections that stand up for the level of voter fraud that has occurred? the to talk about the methods combating voter fraud that have been used in the past. guest: the period that is most shameless is in the post-civil war era, particularly in the south where, quite frankly, but a lot of southerners took issue with the presence of northerners on southern up soil and the idea that former slaves were given the right to vote. the goes beyond fraud. literally, there was physical intimidation. over time, but the power structure came to reflect those biases. blacks found it increasingly
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risky to venture forth in subsequent years. never mind a constitutional amendment guaranteeing every american a right to vote come a host of devices were enacted like the poll tax, though not fraudulent, it nevertheless they were clearly devised to keep people from voting. there is a lot of controversy over this subject. first and foremost, it is a fundamental right of every american, anyone living in a
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democracy, to cast a vote. that should not be inconsistent with the legitimate safeguards protecting that right. host: rochester, new york, democratic line. caller: i'm wondering if you cannot talk about the three-way split in 1948. guest: thank you. this is a classic case of where the pundits had it wrong. not just the pollsters but the pundits. harry truman winning in 1948 was thought to be in a very weak position partially because he could not keep its own party united behind him. there was not one but two third parties that year. henry wallace, who had been vice president of direct d.r., someone who had criticized truman for being too harsh, and he formed the progressive party. at the convention in philadelphia, the southern delegates walked out because they were unhappy with the
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civil rights movement and they had nominated strom thurmond it from south carolina. they said this confirmed his impossible position. in fact, it turned out that it work to his advantage. the fact that you had strom thurmond and that truman was
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willing to take the position to say, "goodbye, strom," it really helped with the black vote. the fact you had henry wallace walking out of the democratic party inoculated truman and the democrats against the charges that they were too far to the left themselves and could not be trusted. this is one of their rare examples where subtraction work to to both of their favors. host: our guest is richard norton smith. salvadore, burbank, calif. caller: hello? good morning. host: caller, your honor. -- you are on. go ahead. caller: i have a question for mr. norton. host: you are on. go ahead. caller: i'm wondering what happened with the votes in 2000 and they disappeared overseas and they said they did not know anything about it. hear, the high court said they knew nothing about it. they never answered the real question but perhaps because you, as a historian, have some
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information about these votes. 7,000 votes disappeared in an accident from the soldiers over there. host: let me stop you there to see what our guests response. guest: this is the first allegation i have heard of that. host: but go to dallas, texas, independent line. caller: is there a historical comparison to suppression. third-party votes as there is today? guest: i do not know what you mean about a suppression of the third-party voices. there have been the third party boys over there. for example, the debates, back when they were run by the league of women voters and now the debate commission. ross perot felt when he did not
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meet a certain threshold in the polls that he was not invited into the debates. there are any number of complaints that have been made over the years. it is tough for third-party to get on the ballot. let's be honest. the two major parties are aggressive in perpetuating themselves and they are not interested in fostering strong challengers. host: the history of money in campaigning. guest: it is a perennial issue. i hate to say that it is evergreen, but it has always been with us. going back to 1876, that was an interesting election. he was very much the candidate of industry, business.
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william jennings bryan, a populist from nebraska who gave a voice really to the voiceless, particularly westerners. there was a huge financial discrepancy between the parties. there were instances of industrialists and votes in the workmen's envelops, telling them who to vote for on election day. mckinley won decisively, if not overwhelmingly. that paved the way for the next 20 years of republican votes in the white house. caller: the morning from oklahoma. i have a question. what other presidential elections have politically divided our nation as much as this year's election? guest: that the great question. i think you could argue, broadly speaking, we have become more polarized. there are a number of factors contributing to that. i think the media and in some ways the internet is an instrument of polarization. there have been any number of elections. gosh. 1936, fdr want 61% of the boat
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but it was a culturally divided electorate. it was economically divided. fdr famously said that he welcomed the hatred of the economic loyalists who were in a rage against him. he was in a position to say that because he had gotten 61% of the vote. then get elections that are basically confirming elections. when eisenhower won for a second term or bill clinton ran for a second term. not that there were not divisions or differences, obviously, but they took place in a different climate. what we saw in 2000, 2004, and yet again in 2008. it raises the question what is
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it about our political culture? what is it about our country that is divided not just 50-50 politically but 50-50 culturally that is feeding this intense polarization? host: are you still there? were you currently in costs right now? caller: yes, i am. host: why did you ask the question you did? caller: i ask that question because previously we had come up with a different question, but it was not accessible for this topic. we put our heads together because here, in oklahoma, we're
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really interested in politics and everyone definitely has the roadsides. everybody is so passionate about what they think is right for our country. we wanted to know the history on it so we could have that effect our election this year. guest: first of all, it was a great question and it's even better that you and your classmates are interested. i don't know what the solution is to polarization, but i know would involve the interests of young people like yourself and i hope to never lose that interest. host: thank you. caller: have a great day. host: arkansas, democratic line, william. hello. caller: our you today? i have a comment and a question.
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host: go right ahead. caller: since the bill clinton era, our economy was left in a surplus in since then, i would like to know your view in your comments on the jobs that have been shipped from the united states to overseas through these big corporate companies and how it has benefited, at first, and now i want to know your stands on how it is harming the economy of the united states today. guest: i think you should ask those questions a politician than not historians. host: the hampshire, for our guest richard norton smith, on the independent line. caller: i was wondering how third-party voters will affect the two stronger parties in the election. you could say that they can almost ruined it for another candidate. guest: the fact of the matter is, the earlier caller who
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raised the question related to this one, i think there is a sense on behalf of many people who support third parties there is a sense of frustration that they receive much less covered by the media. that being said, the fact of the matter is, in the state of virginia, we have someone who relatively few americans have heard of, a former congressman, a man named virgil goode running to the constitution to get who believes the republican party is too liberal. there is a real speculation if virginia will be as close as some people think it may be that if he pulls 10,000 votes and they come disproportionately from governor romney what that, in fact, could
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be moving the big-ticket. jill stein is the green party candidate in there is no one state where it appears her presence may have that effect. again, you just do not know. there are certainly a lot of people who believe that ralph nader in 2000 cost al gore the presidency. i suspect some of whom have never forgiven mr. nader for that. host: new haven, connecticut. caller: my question is about florida. host: are you still there?
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caller: why is there always a problem concerning florida when it is time to vote? you would think that as the years pass, they would get it right sooner or later concerning people's rights to vote. guest: and sorry, i did not. host: we talked about the two men involved. give us some history as to how this would be resolved. guest: the first time it went to the house was in 1800. in 1844, there were four candidates. the man who came in second in both the popular and electoral vote, john quincy adams, went on to win in the house because the
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man who came in fourth and was therefore eliminated had pulled some strings and produced a victory for adams. i think, in many ways, he regretted that and henry clay, the speaker, more that as a stamp of shame for the rest of his days and prevented him from ever becoming president. and trying to think of the third time. it will come to me. caller: hello. good morning. happy election day. why do you think of voter fraud is such a hot-button issue? do you think will actually cut down on voter fraud if we were to require identification at the polls? guest: again, these hot-button political issues, i prefer to leave them to people who deal with this for a living. personally, i have not studied
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this question as closely, obviously, as some of these other people have. my sense is that there's a disproportionate effort being made in the name of preventing voter fraud, whether it is intended to or not, has the effect of cutting down on the legitimate spread of error. host: gerald ford, jimmy carter. guest: he had the burden of the nixon name and the economy was in pretty bad shape. by the last weekend, gallup showed up by one. that was despite the famous gaffe remembered from the debates. that is a fascinating subject. if you look at the history of presidential debates or the incumbent president, there is a pattern and it really does raise the question. barack obama had a terrible first debate. george w. bush had a bad first debate. ragan famously in 1984 had a bad first debate with walter mondale in their raises the question whether there is something about the bubble of the presidency that lets the president get rusty. people do not ask them tough questions. it is almost as if the first debate is shock therapy that is administered to them.
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host: because they live inflated lives. guest: of course. host: tennessee and the independent line. caller: pedro, you're one of my favorites. you get more questions in than any of the other hosts. for mr. smith, can you talk about the accuracy of the exit polling. it seems they were pretty accurate up until 2004, kerry- bush. thank you. i will take my question offline. guest: i'm afraid i did not hear that. host: the history of exit polling. guest: great question. it's relatively recent. i don't know about you, but it would seem to be absolutely infallible. then we had elections where it was decidedly fallible. the most obvious example was in 2004. it during the day, the numbers
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are coming in and it was very clear that president bush was losing to john kerry. not surprisingly, there was jubilation in the kerry camp and something close to despair in the bush camp. and then the actual votes came in. statisticians are still trying to unravel what it was about that election law, the discrepancy. i think it becomes increasingly problematic when you have so much of the country voting before. by some accounts, between 25%- 33% of the votes have already been cast, somehow the fact that in?
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there seems to be real difference. the polls suggest that there is a market advantage for obama in the early voters and a market advantage for governor romney in those planning to vote today. how do you factor all of that in with a degree of position?
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host: have you ever asked if a voter registration has affected elections historically? guest: there is no doubt that there are candidates who want to get every single vote out and others who are less urgently that imperative. certainly, democrats believe same-day registration is a boon. host: we have a few more minutes with our guest. from georgia, joining richard norton smith us norton looking at the history of close
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presidential elections. on our democratic line, thank you for taking the time to call today. caller: good morning. it's an honor to speak with you, professor. i am a liberal democrat sitting in a red state that could not get any more red. i'm wondering about some of the other congressional districts and whether or not it may be something to consider in the future to kind of find a happy medium between what the conversations about the electoral college winners and popular vote winners. thank you very much. guest: the viewers may not be aware but maine and nebraska, they have truth electoral votes for congressional districts. it surprises people even now to
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realize four years ago barack obama picked up an electoral vote in nebraska which is not certainly democratic territory. but maybe omaha and that democratic. he did well. and maine, as well. it's an interesting idea. we are still a union of states. however the states want to handle this, it could be argued, for example, that people would pay more attention to nebraska or maine because of this.
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instead of writing and off automatically as red or blue because of the unique circumstances, there is a real chance that you can poach on the other sides terrain. if you try that across the country, it seems to me either you have an electoral college or you don't. host: corpus christi, texas, go ahead. caller: i have a comment. you were talking about the polarization of the country. that is something that has been disturbing me for the last 25 years. i will just mention a couple of things and then i will get off. a couple of issues today, like gay marriage and abortion, things like that did not matter that long ago. for me, i guess i'm just old- fashioned, but i'm not interested in a politician's stance on those issues. i want to have someone in office that can govern. we talk about how we are the greatest country in the world,
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but it seems like all we do is fight amongst ourselves. i guess that's all i have to say. i wish things would get better and change. thank you. guest: an interesting viewpoint. the polarization we have experienced is different. in the 1930's was divided over economic issues. the difference in the debate was what to be the government's role in the economy. we are polarized along economic issues. the agenda evolves with the rest of the culture, but it does mean the polarization is more intense because cultural issues, which could to our innermost values, there are naturally
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going to insight, in some ways, harsher feelings down dollars and cents issues. host: can we say with certainty that every election result was proper? another question on voter fraud. guest: that goes back to 1876. on balance, over 200 years, i think we have a remarkable record. i think we can pat ourselves on the back most of the time. you know what? no one said democracy is neat or easy. host: another call from florida on the democrats' line. you're going to have to go ahead. do not wait for the response on tv. caller: religion, history, any
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records? part two of the question, i like trading combined with nixon. caller host:, keep going. caller: polarization is coming more into play, so will religion be instrumental or not? god bless you and the troops. guest: i think we can feel good about the way we have evolved. look at how smith, the first catholic nominated by a major party and there is no doubt one of the factors, but not the only one, but it was one factor contributing to his overwhelming defeat. l. smith, in many ways, laid the ground work for the new deal or for john f. kennedy to
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become the new catholic president and it is a nonissue now. this year, governor romney's mormon faith, i'm not aware of it being an issue to any significant degree. agonot sure 10-20 years would have made that prediction. we're very good at finding a unity that goes beyond tolerance, a celebration of diversity. no better day than election day. host: what is something of note that you think people could find interesting looking back to this election in 2012? what is something that stands out? guest: it's a double referendum.
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any time a president runs for a second term is a referendum on that incumbent. that is doubly so with this president and his record on the economy, etc. the untold story of this year is, for a lot of voters, a referendum on the nominating process, not just in the presidential race, but if you look at the senate races. if the republicans fail to take the senate tonight, not withstanding the fact that they are only defending 10 seats, it will be the second election cycle in a row where the expectations would be disappointed. the case can be made that it is the nominating process within the party and some of the candidates it produces. host: richard norton smith from george mason university,